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Postgraduate Certificate in Education - PGCE - Primary

With an engaging range of high quality modules, innovative research-informed teaching and excellent employability prospects, the PGCE Primary programme is the perfect choice for teacher training.

Key features of the PGCE Primary course:

  • High quality programmes and excellent innovative, research informed teaching
  • 60 credits at Master level
  • A primary subject specialism in a wide range of subject areas
  • Additional qualifications and training
  • Personalized levels of academic and teaching support from University tutors and school mentors
  • Academic staff with excellent research and publication profiles
  • High quality, carefully chosen partnership schools, in a range of settings
  • Excellent preparation to teach all National Curriculum subjects
  • Unparalleled support for newly qualified teacher induction


What our trainees and NQTs say about PGCE Primary:

"I studied Early Childhood Studies at the University of Worcester and already had a good job as a nursery nurse, but I wanted to teach children aged 3-7. The PGCE course was great, my favourite module was PE. I am not at all a sporty person, but the module was so much fun and it gave me confidence to teach sports to children."

'I learned so much on my PGCE course and it is brilliant to be able to put it all into action with my own class.'

What Ofsted say...

“Trainees benefit from a good range of placements in different contexts, including large and small schools in rural and urban areas”

“University based training, including that for special educational needs and sports is of high quality”

“Trainees rightly value the expertise of the well-qualified university tutors and of visiting speakers”

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Course Overview

Designed in partnership with local primary schools, this teacher training course provides the perfect grounding for those who wish to teach all areas of the Primary Curriculum.

  • Our inclusive programme offers a range of learning experiences, from seminars and lectures to bespoke tutorials;
  • Tailor-made teaching and support from our excellent team of professionals;
  • University-based teaching covers all National Curriculum subjects;
  • The opportunity to study a primary specialist subject (PSS);
  • A significant pedagogy and management (PAM) element, in which trainees examine the role of the professional teacher, child as learner and wider issues associated with school and society; 
  • Trainees will develop a deepened understanding of the links between theory and professional practice;
  • Specialist pathways in Early Years and Mathematics
  • A range of high quality, carefully selected school placements are embedded, in a variety of settings;
  • Throughout the course there is an emphasis on inclusive education, with particular reference to behaviour for learning and special educational needs and disability (SEND);
  • Upon successful completion of the course, trainees will be awarded with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS); 
  • Committed to the best outcomes for all, the PGCE primary team will continue to support newly qualified teachers into their induction year.


Embedded School Experience

School experience is a substantial and integral part of the course:

  • School experience visit days and block placements in terms 1, 2 and 3.
  • In total, of the 38 weeks of the course, 24 will be spent in schools. There are opportunities to undertake placements in a SEND setting.

Applying for the PGCE Primary Course


All applications are through the UCAS teacher training system:




Course Fees 2015-2016 - £9,000

Provisional term dates for PGCE Primary 2015-16 (subject to change):

Induction Day: July 2015 (dates to be confirmed)

Term 1: 7/9/15 – 18/12/15 
Term 2: 4/1/16 – 25/3/16
Term 3: 11/4/16 – 8/7/16*

*Please note: all dates are subject to change and additional dates may be added to the end of the course, with notice.

Financial incentives for those who train in 2015/16

Please see:

Entry requirements


  • An honours degree of 2:2 or above
  • Grade C at GCSE in English, Mathematics and Science (or equivalent) passed at the time of application. A minimum of 5-10 days experience, within the last 12 months, in maintained Primary Schools , Early Years and Nursery settings
  • Department for Education Professional Skills tests in English and Mathematics must be passed prior to entry. For further details visit the Professional Skills Test page.
  • For Mathematics Specialism – a degree /A level in Mathematics

If your qualifications are not listed, please contact the Admissions Office for advice by All applications for PGCE Primary should be made via the UCAS Teacher Training website. Shortlisted applicants will be interviewed.



Study options

The PGCE Primary course is based on modules in school, and taught sessions in University.

Get in touch

The PGCE Primary course offers a combination of University and school-based modules. Get in touch:

Admissions Office: 
For general enquiries pertaining to PGCE course application
01905 855111



There is a high employment rate for Newly Qualified Teachers (NQTs) from the course. Upon successful completion of the PGCE course, you take with you a Career Entry Profile to start the process of your continuing professional development as a teacher.

Course content


24 weeks of school-based professional practice and 6 university-taught modules:

Module  Content  Assessment 
Pedagogy and Management How children learn, what affects their learning and what teachers can do to improve learning for children. There is a specific focus on behaviour management and learners as active participants 3000 word assignment
4000 word written professional portfolio
40 Masters Credits 
Primary Subject Specialism A small-scale school based enquiry in a subject in which you already have degree level/A level qualifications or significant experience 3000 word school-based research project
20 Masters Credits
Core subjects and Computing English, mathematics, science and computing subject knowledge and pedagogy Subject profiles
Foundation subjects, languages and SEND Art, D&T, geography, history, languages, music, PE, RE, SEND subject knowledge and pedagogy Professional enquiry tasks
School experience 24 weeks (120 days) in schools and settings. There are currently three block placements Practice assessed against the Teachers' Standards through observation, completion of professional enquiry tasks and Reflective Portfolio (RP)


You will learn how to

  • Apply theoretical and practical knowledge and understanding of how children learn and develop in classroom settings;
  • Manage different patterns of organisation and styles of teaching to best support effective learning and provide equality of opportunity for all children;
  • Develop an understanding of Special Educational Needs and Disability through the application of inclusive teaching practices;
  • Develop and demonstrate the knowledge, skills and teaching competences which will enable you to observe, plan, teach, organise and assess children’s progress and learning across the full range of the Primary and Early Years curriculum subjects;
  • Develop a clear framework for your own professional values and demonstrate a critical and reflective attitude towards your practice;
  • Build on your Undergraduate research skills to become a trainee-researcher by undertaking a small scale school based research project in your Primary Subject Specialism

Elective modules


You will be involved in assessing your teaching skills and competence as they develop through the use of a Professional Development Profile to which students, teachers and tutors contribute.

At the end of your course you will be advised about your first year in teaching through the Career Entry and Development Profile, as part of your Continuing Professional Development.


Teaching approach

  • School experience in a range of settings
  • Studying all areas of learning and teaching across all EYFS and Primary National Curriculum subjects
  • Tutor-led workshops, lectures, seminars, fieldwork and guest lectures , primarily to introduce underpinning knowledge, theoretical argument, practical skills, central issues, key texts and inter-professional fields of study;
  • Study of key texts and supplementary reading to enable students to identify subject matter that will enhance their understanding and intellectual ability;
  • Participation in high level professional discussion, peer presentations and debate, to encourage trainees to actively engage with and critically challenge the field
  • Directed studies, Professional Enquiry Tasks, case studies and problem solving tasks provide opportunities to develop approaches that will deepen levels of understanding and professional judgement, including multi-agency approaches; development of practice-based competence and skills of critical reflection through guided individual mentoring during placements.

One-to-one academic and personal tutorial support including access to our first class Firstpoint services.

Trainee views

Faye Rogerson

"I studied Early Childhood Studies at the University of Worcester and already had a good job as a nursery nurse, but I wanted to teach children aged 3-7. The PGCE course was great, my favourite module was PE. I am not at all a sporty person, but the module was so much fun and it gave me confidence to teach sports to children."

Academic department

Institute of Education

“Our high quality programmes and innovative teaching methods prepare and train the very best professionals. Worcester graduates have made a huge difference in the field of education.”
Ann Jordan, Head of Institute

Skills test

Skills test

All applicants for teacher training courses need to take the numeracy and literacy professional skills tests as part of the application process. You will need to ensure you have passed them both before the start of the course.

The first attempt at taking your skills tests in each subject is provided free of charge. You can book up to two resits if required, but you will be expected to pay for this yourself. The charge is £19.25 per test. The pass mark for the tests is 63%. Please note that after your third attempt you cannot retake for 24 months. Once you have passed the skills tests they are valid for three years from the date passed.

You must take the tests after you have applied and you will need to provide evidence of your application when you attend the test centre. When you take the tests you will need to provide proof that you have applied for a teacher training course. At interview we will ask you to provide proof that you have booked the skills tests.

If you are made an offer after interview part of your conditions will be to pass the tests and a time frame will be indicated. We do however advise that you try and take the tests before your interview date, or as soon after your interview as possible, as this will enable us to make a firm offer.

For more information visit the National College for Teaching and Leadership website or run an advanced search.

You may also find this book a useful resource to help in your planning and preparation for the tests.


OFSTED Comments

Following our very successful Ofsted inspection (March 2014) here are some headlines from the report …

“Trainees have access to excellent resources and facilities”

“Trainees are prepared well to teach the curriculum, including the new national curriculum to be introduced in September 2014”

“The opportunities to specialise in subjects, such as mathematics, are helping trainees to become experts in their fields”

“University based training, including that for special educational needs and sports is of high quality”

“Trainees understand and promote inclusion well which, in turn, is enabling them to overcome barriers to pupils’ learning and physical development”

“Trainees rightly value the expertise of the well-qualified university tutors and of visiting speakers”

“Trainees also benefit from university based training that has research at its heart, putting theory into practice in practical ways”

“Strong mentoring exists within the primary phase”

“Trainee’s high completion and employment rates”

“The continuing strong reputation the partnership has in the region for developing different routes into teaching and supporting school improvement”

“Trainees benefit from a good range of placements in different contexts, including large and small schools in rural and urban areas”

“….. Trainees get a good deal from the partnership. This is reflected in the confidence schools have in it to develop good teachers”

“Partnership leaders visions for excellence is strong”